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COVID-19: Cancellation of non-urgent professional service outpatient appointments

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Horizon has begun cancelling non-urgent professional service outpatient appointments.

This will affect therapeutic services, laboratory services, diagnostic imaging, the Stan Cassidy Centre for Rehabilitation, pharmacy, and electrodiagnostics and respiratory therapy at all of our hospitals. 

Horizon remains available for urgent outpatient cases as determined by our professional service departments.

Horizon will contact all patients and clients if their appointment is cancelled and will call those affected to reschedule when the situation allows.

This will help us allocate and sustain our staffing resources and prioritize services as part of our response to the global Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

List of cancelled non-urgent professional service outpatient appointments

Therapeutic Services

  • Routine outpatient services in clinical nutrition, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech language pathology, audiology, social work, and psychology are suspended except for select urgent cases.  We remain available for urgent outpatient cases and these will be arranged with the applicable department.
    • Services for cardiac rehab, geriatric clinic, rehab day treatment program, and pulmonary rehab are suspended.
    • Exceptions for outpatient services:
      • Physiotherapy:
        • Urgent post-op joint replacements will be seen (Miramichi)
        • High Risk Pediatric referrals
        • Recent post-op orthopedic surgery, breast surgery, hand surgery (Moncton, Fredericton, and Saint John)
    • Speech Language Pathology:
      • Urgent swallowing assessments
      • Laryngectomy patients, where applicable
    • Audiology:
      • Sudden Onset Hearing Loss
      • Children with new amplification systems challenges
    • Occupational Therapy:
      • Post-op hand surgery
      • Patient requiring burn garments
    • Clinical Nutrition
      • New celiac disease
      • Eating disorder
      • Failure to Thrive
      • Gestational Diabetes and other new onset Diabetes
    • Social Work:
      • Oncology outpatients may receive services by telephone where possible
      • Urgent prenatal/postnatal concerns
      • Family Planning Clinic services for urgent SW requests only.
    • Psychology:
      • Oncology outpatients available (during clinic or by phone)
      • HIV outpatients suspended
    • Outpatient pediatric services suspended
    • Outpatient neuropsychology assessments suspended

Laboratory Services

  • Suspensions apply to all services except:
    • Oncology
    • Dialysis / Transplant
    • Pre-natal
    • PT/INR for therapeutic monitoring
    • Therapeutic drug level monitoring - some drug level and other tests like CBC
    • Pre-op depending on surgery decisions

Diagnostic Imaging

  • Diagnostic imaging will postpone breast screening including MRI screening, BMD, select fluoro studies, and barium studies. Radiologists will review CT, US, Nuclear Medicine, IR and MRI exams to determine which requests can be postponed. We are pulling exams up to the end of April 2020.
    • Area 2 has completed this task. Area 3, 1, 7 are reviewing requests.

Stan Cassidy Centre for Rehabilitation

  • Medical staff has suspended all outpatient electives; urgent and emergent can be managed as they come in
  • Medical staff will teleconference with ALS patients
  • All other outpatient services are suspended
  • Pre-assessments for Spinraza may continue
  • Post-op and post botox intervention to be triaged by team
  • All adult outings have been suspended
  • All ALS clinics will be held virtually
  • All assistive technologies services including driving, seating, and rehabilitation engineering are suspended

Pharmacy

  • Ambulatory care services are suspended

Electrodiagnostics and Respiratory Therapy

  • Outpatient ECGs have been reduced to urgent only
  • ECHO: routine and semi-urgent exams are suspended; cardiologists in Fredericton have already started reviewing requisitions
  • Respiratory: non-urgent pulmonary function tests, COPD clinics, and pulmonary rehab are suspended; some services may be offered to patients by phone
  • Chest clinics in Moncton and Miramichi have suspended routine follow-up and education services
  • Asthma and COPD Clinics are suspended

Non-urgent Outpatient General Radiology